Frank Dobbin

Frank Dobbin is Professor of Sociology at Harvard, where he directs the sociology Ph.D. Program and the joint Harvard Business School/Sociology Ph.D. program in organizational behavior.  He holds a B.A. in sociology from Oberlin College and a Ph.D. from Stanford. Dobbin studies organizations, inequality, economic behavior, and public policy. His Inventing Equal Opportunity (Princeton 2009), which won the Max Weber and Distinguished Book awards from the American Sociological Association, shows how corporate personnel managers defined what it meant to discriminate as they sought to comply with civil rights legislation. Forging Industrial Policy: The United States, Britain, and France in the Railway Age (Cambridge 1994), which won the ASA’s Max Weber Award, traces nations’ distinct modern industrial strategies to early differences in their political systems. The Global Diffusion of Markets and Democracy (Cambridge 2008), coedited with Beth Simmons and Geoffrey Garrett, explores the rise of neoliberal economic policies and the expansion of political participation around the world in the post-war period. Stanford's Organization Theory Renaissance, 1970-2000 (Emerald 2010), coedited with Claudia Schoonhoven, is a modern-day Rashomon about the revival of organizational studies in Palo Alto. Dobbin is currently studying the real-world effects of corporate policies designed to prevent discrimination, and the effects of corporate shareholder value innovations and associated regulations to control corporate risk-taking.